I was very alarmed when I received a phone call on Wednesday, December 5th, stating that Gosford Lembhard, Jr. was locked up in a bedroom at his mother’s house because the police were outside trying to get in and arrest him for not showing up to court. I went over there and was shocked to see so many police officers surrounding the house. There were also a lot of people standing outside watching this fiasco, which could have turned into an awful tragedy. Thank God it didn’t! Thanks also to attorney Michael Sussman and community activist Omari Shakur.
While standing there for those six long hours, I heard a lot of people asking, "where are our elected officials?" Truthfully, that same question was stirring inside of my mind as well because I was tremendously puzzled as to why not one of them showed up. Where were they? Were they not concerned about an incident that could have brought much danger to that part of the City of Newburgh? Was it because this incident was located in an area that they have always seriously neglected? Were they a no-show because most of the people living in that area are the very ones that they have always seriously ignored? Why? Why? Why? There is something seriously wrong with this picture.
People sometimes feel that, because of one’s status in life, they are less than human, therefore they deserve to be treated like animals. Wow! That’s very frightening.
No one knows what might befall them throughout their journey of life, therefor it’s not wise to be so cold-blooded towards another’s bad circumstances. This family has been faced with many serious problems, just as others in our community have. It amazes me how those that profess to be so concerned about their community could display such a cold-blooded attitude. The dangerous part about this type of attitude is that one never knows what’s awaiting them around the corner. Things could change as quickly as the snap of a finger.
Dr. King’s philosophy regarding these types of problems, physical needs, are: "In any realistic doctrine of man we must be forever concerned about his physical and material well-being. When Jesus said that man cannot live by bread alone, he did not imply that men can live without bread. As Christians we must think not only about ‘mansions in the sky,’ but also about the slums and ghettos that cripple the human soul, not merely about streets in heaven ‘flowing with milk and honey,’ but also about the millions of people in this world who go to bed hungry at night."
The Lembhard family is going through a horrendous situation now and evidently have been throughout the years. They need significant help to heal and this community should be about helping them to do so instead of looking down on them. Gosford, Jr. is going through a significant and critical time and needs to know that there is genuine concern in his community for him.
Listen to these words coming forth from Jeff Johnson, BET Host and Producer, and CEO of "Truth Is Power!":
"Depression is a silent killer in the youth community. It kills esteem, it kills motivation, and it kills dreams. But it is only able to destroy these things because it kills hope. And in a world where so many young people already exist in environments where they are not expected to make it, we now have hopelessness on top of hopelessness. These conditions turn our community’s best into candidates for suicide - for no other reason than because we fail to accept and address depression in young people as real. If we can spiritually, emotionally, and psychologically address and treat depression, we will witness a resurrection of hope in our children that will not only save their lives, but also change the future for the better."
Let me leave you with the words of Jim Glover, Creative Director of Carol H. Williams Advertising:
"Black people don’t need welfare; we need mental health care. What we need is to parachute psychiatrists into the ghetto like soldiers storming Normandy. As a people we can’t keep getting beat in the head by poverty, racism, broken homes, drugs, police brutality, suspicion of character, unemployment, cheating husbands and wives, incest, homelessness and not freak the hell out sometimes!"
Wow! Seriously think on that for a minute! This is Lillie’s Point of View!